Adverse childhood experiences and tramadol use in Nigeria: the mediating role of sociosexuality in a predominantly male student sample

D. U. Onu, C. M. Ifeagwazi, C. T. Orjiakor, S. K. Iorfa

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    Background: Tramadol is a priority opioid in Nigeria given its widespread use. The enhancement of sexual experience is commonly identified as a driver of tramadol use. Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) are associated with substance use and other high-risk behaviors such as sexual-risk behaviors. In the current study, we examined how the pathway between ACEs and tramadol use is mediated by sociosexuality in a sample of Nigerian students.

    Method: Three hundred and one students (male, n = 289, 96%; mean age = 22.6 years; SD age = 3.5), were recruited from hostels and living quarters in and around a Nigerian university. Participants completed measures of ACEs, sociosexuality, and tramadol use. Hayes PROCESS macro for SPSS which uses a regression-based, path-analytical framework, was employed in the data analysis.

    Results: ACEs and the domains of sociosexuality were positively associated with tramadol use. Sociosexual behaviors and desires mediated the relationship between ACEs and tramadol use.

    Conclusion: ACEs are linked both to TU as well as desiring and engaging in uncommitted sexual relationships. Rehabilitation programs targeting TU may improve if they identify, examine, and address sociopsychological processes that drive the use of tramadol.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)427-433
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of Substance Use
    Issue number4
    Early online date16 Nov 2020
    Publication statusPublished - 4 Jul 2021


    • adverse childhood experiences
    • sociosexual attitude
    • sociosexual behavior
    • sociosexual desires
    • sociosexuality
    • tramadol misuse

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